The tension stems from freedom of exploration versus desire to tell a story. Unlike Metroid, Infestation is very event-heavy and feels the need to nanny you from one set piece to the next.
We're always pushing forwards, yelling "oorah!" as we sprint to extraction points, blow up gun batteries or charge at alien queens in our iconic power lifters. Arguably, what is lost in independence is gained in fan service.Trying to suck a ten-foot xenomorph through an air lock ain't Metroid, but it most definitely is Aliens.
That is Infestation's great achievement: perfect emulation of a beloved universe on a three-inch screen. WayForward's art team rebuild film sets pixel by pixel, capturing the sterile mundanity of the Sulaco's living quarters right through to the hulking strangeness of the Space Jockey.
Within this stunning backdrop walk the incredible marines, a mix of macho quirks and jumbled nerves. It's almost worth killing them off in order to spend time admiring their replacements.
And then there are the bugs themselves, built from writhing limbs that rip apart beautifully under gun power. A few overly murky scenes aside, the visuals are a 2D triumph.
If Samus won't be losing sleep over Infestation, she should at least feel a bit ashamed to let a third party encroach on her turf. In the absence of a new Metroid, and an eerie silence from the Castlevania camp, Aliens is fine slot-filler.
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Like a chestburster, Infestation arrives out of nowhere to great surprise. Unlike a chestburster, its dinky alien thrills are very much welcomed.
- Excellent sprite work
- Great use of the Aliens license
- Run 'n' gun 'n' snoop is good fun
- DS speakers don't do sound justice
- Very guided